> I don't understand the point you are making above.
> Could you explain it in other terms I might be more familiar with
My overarching point is really about the nature of emergence itself. To untangle the language it might be easiest to look at this diagram on page 162 of this book chapter. This shows what I mean by the focal level between higher and lower order systems.
Some explanation is also provided on pages 161-163. This is set within a context of exploring an "ontology of knowledge". It might not directly be the same form of ontology as this group focuses on, but it is sufficiently related for me to think we are still conversing in line with the objectives of this ontology forum.
In this book chapter, we suggest emergence is understood as occurring where “the characteristics of the sub-systems and the super-systems do not characterise the emergent patterns”. Your case study seams to be a summary of the different systems and the impact of the interaction between the higher order and lower order systems.
> So you prefer the word "related" here, which is ok with me. It really
> is just a relationship between Strepta's world (as well as a bacterium
> can perceive it) and Strepta's controls over that world.
It is not that I prefer the word "related". I am making the point that what emerges at the boundaries between a higher order and lower order system when a perturbation occurs is non-causal. There is no relationship between the characteristics of the emergent system and the higher and lower order systems. When I refer to perturbation I am referring to the impact from the higher order system that involves the “application of toothpaste”.
Strepta's control that you describe is a form of knowledge. Control information is used to maintain the coherence of its own system. This is in line with the radical constructivists position that suggests that Strepra does not know itself to be Strepra, and can only interpret the world from its own frame, and uses control information to manage the boundaries of distinctions between “itself” and "non self".
> But pure knowledge is so sterile; I can get knowledge of things and
> relationships from a paper, but I have to understand a PERSON to
> really understand that person's self-interest. I still prefer to
> focus on self-interest as the source of a certain kind of knowledge
> (such as how-to knowledge, not as well covered in the AI world as
> declarative what-is knowledge).
I am not sure if we are on the same page when we are referring to knowledge here. When I refer to knowledge as an emergent property of an evolutionary system, I am suggesting that this idea can potentially extends to lower order systems like bacteria. Strepta's control information is a form of knowledge.
Having said that, I am not an evolutionary biologist myself and my interests are more to do higher order expressions of knowledge - not really to do with your case study. We have included as an appendix to the above chapter a preliminary ideas about an ontology of research knowledge support systems (pages 184-188).
- Vines, R., Hall, W.P., McCarthy, G. 2010. Textual representations and knowledge support-systems in research intensive networks. (in) Cope, B., Kalantzis, M., Magee, L. (eds). Towards a Semantic Web: Connecting Knowledge in Academic Research. Oxford: Chandos Press, pp. 145-195.